Pledge to help bring low airfares to South MS

Many of us for years have been wishing Southwest Airlines would fly into our local airport. Just days ago the airline known for low fares announced it is buying AirTran which flies out of the Gulfport-Biloxi International Airport. So does this mean that we will soon have Southwest here? Or could it mean once the Southwest deal is finalized, the three times a week AirTran service would be canceled?

No one knows for sure. But the coast has a short time table to prove to Southwest that our market is one they want to service.

One way this can happen is for everyone to do the following. The Coast Chamber and Gulf Coast Business Council are asking those of you who know you are going to travel next year to call  them at 228-604-0014 OR 228-897-2020 and make a pledge that you will spend a specific amount of money with AirTran in the coming year. You would then pay that pledge amount and be given that money back on a debit card for travel on AirTran in 2011.

We are not asking you to abandon other airlines, but to include AirTran in some of your travel plans next year. The hope is that this community wide commitment would keep AirTran at our airport and convince Southwest to commit to South Mississippi as well. What a wonderful accomplishment that would be for all of us who use the Gulfport-Biloxi International Airport.

That's our opinion, we would like to hear yours. Email your thoughts to, or post your comments below.

David Vincent
WLOX-TV General Manager

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